Kait's Bookshelf

Book Reviews and Literary Services


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Book Bucket List Picks and November Wrap-Up!

Kait's Bookshelf November Wrap Up

November was a quick month for me, most likely because I was so busy. The Thanksgiving holiday was wonderful, although it was colder than I would have preferred! After a brief warm-up, there is snow on the ground once again as we move our way into December.

But colder weather has its advantages…it means more chances to curl up by the fire with a book and tea or hot cocoa. I found myself doing just that a few times in November as I read my way through two book bucket list picks and discovered the magical world of Stephanie Garber’s Caraval novels. November was indeed a good month for reading.

Just announced from George R. R. Martin: Discover the thrilling history of the Targaryen family in F 

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Book Review: Legendary by Stephanie Garber

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Thanksgiving week is always a favorite of mine. My hubby and I are hosting dinner on Thursday for the family, and it’s a real blessing to be able to provide a nice meal and family time for everyone. I look forward to the family gathering on Thursday, and I also look forward to Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, a glorious long weekend with nothing to do but – you guessed it – read! (and eat leftovers of course!)

But before I get cooking, I have a new review to share. Today I’ll be reviewing Legendary, the sequel to Caraval, which propelled me into an unputdownable magical adventure, just what I needed!

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Book Review: Caraval by Stephanie Garber

Kait's Bookshelf Caraval

Each year on Veteran’s Day I find myself reflecting on my freedom and how grateful I am to the many men and women who have dedicated and given their lives to defending that freedom. I am so grateful that I can walk into a bookstore or library and pick up a book on just about any topic I please and educate myself. I can learn, read, and write what I please without fear of persecution or harm. It’s not lost on me how many other people, especially women, are not so fortunate in many parts of the world. So I would like to dedicate today’s post to Veterans, particularly my brother who is currently serving. Never forget.

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Book Review: What You Hide by Natalie D. Richards

What You Hide

Cover art is copyright of Sourcebooks Fire.

 

I’ve been on a real thriller/ mystery kick lately, so I was thrilled (see what I did there?) 😉 when I received an early copy of What You Hide, a new YA mystery from Sourcebooks Fire. This was a very fast-paced, suspenseful novel.

I recently blogged about why I love the young adult genre, and What You Hide is a perfect example of everything I mentioned in that blog!

Bonus: the library plays a prominent role in this book!

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Why I Love Reading the Young Adult Genre

Recently, Goodreads dedicated an entire week to the young adult genre. I learned about it through their emails and social media posts, and I thought it was a great idea. One post in particular really grabbed my attention:

Goodreads

The post declared “Be proud of what you read” and featured a photo taken of a sign at a library granting adult readers “permission” to browse, read, and enjoy books from the teen section.

I loved this post because so much of what it highlighted is what I love about young adult/ teen books. So I decided to follow in Goodreads’ footsteps and dedicate a blog post to the young adult genre.

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July Wrap-Up!

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I look forward to July each year, because it’s the heart of summertime for me. I often take a little vacation to visit family which means I get some down time. This July was as awesome as I had anticipated, and I hope yours was too! I got to travel, see family, I took on an exciting new book project, and I got tons of reading time in. That, my friends, is an amazing few weeks! Not to mention that as August creeps along, Fall is inching closer and closer. Don’t get me wrong, I love summer, and I’m not ready to see it go. But, my first love is Fall, and I’m starting to get a teeny bit excited at the thought of crisp air, sweaters, and fall leaves. But there will be time for that later. For now, I’d like to recap my July reads and talk about what’s ahead for these last few weeks of summer.

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Book Review: The Book Jumper by Mechthild Glaser

Book Jumper“The idea was ridiculous and at the same time…tantalizing. Until now I’d only ever visited the world of stories, that world that held such fascination for me, in my imagination. But if there was a way of entering it for real…”- The Book Jumper

July was a great month. Not only has summer been in full swing with hot temps and blue skies, but I got to take a week-long summer vacay to visit some family in the scorching southwest. Vacation time for me usually equals reading time, so I was thrilled to catch up on some reads that I’ve been meaning to get to for some time. One of those reads was The Book Jumper by Mechthild Glaser.

I’ll be honest, I totally judged this book by its cover! I first saw this book in a bookstagram post. In case you’re not familiar with bookstagram, it’s a popular hashtag used on Instagram for book-related posts. I follow hundreds of bookstagram accounts, and I love checking out what others are reading. So when I saw a book titled The Book Jumper with cover art of a young woman standing on an open book and what appeared to be a book character rising out of the pages, I knew I had to check it out!

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Book Reviews: Nantucket Blue and Nantucket Red by Leila Howland

nantucket.jpgI’m not sure why but I tend to gravitate toward middle grade and young adult reads during the summer. Maybe it’s because summer will forever remind me of summer vacation and feeling young and free for two and half months. Maybe my adult self is subconsciously trying to recapture that feeling. Whatever the reason, I love diving into MG and YA books during summer, especially ones with a beach or vacation theme.

July might as well be Leila Howland month on my blog. I reviewed her book Hello, Sunshine in July 2017 and just reviewed her first two Tangled novels a couple of weeks ago. Howland writes for young readers extremely well. She doesn’t try to make her writing sound like it’s for young readers. Instead, she writes with an authentic voice, usually in first person, putting the reader right into the shoes of a seventeen or eighteen year old and all the butterflies, hormones, questions, and excitement that come with being young.

I decided to try another round of Howland books, this time a young adult novel, Nantucket Blue, about a teenage girl who spends the summer working on Nantucket Island, followed by the sequel Nantucket Red.

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Book Review: Hocus Pocus and the All-New Sequel by A.W. Jantha

“It’s just a bunch of hocus pocus…”

Hocus Pocus

I don’t often post reviews back to back, but today is the release day of Hocus Pocus and the All-New Sequel, and I just couldn’t wait to share my thoughts. This is going to be one of those posts where I date myself. I remember seeing Hocus Pocus in the theater when it released in July 1993 ~ 25 years ago! I saw it with my sister, brother, and friends. I was still a preteen, and I remember loving the movie. I laughed, I got nervous when Max lit the black flame candle, I screamed when Sarah Sanderson was found hiding in Dani’s bed, and I, like all other preteen girls, developed a tiny crush on Thackery Binx. For years, Disney fans have been begging for a sequel, but only if it includes the original cast, and I agree!

When I heard about the new book re-telling the original story with a new sequel included, I was excited yet a little hesitant, hoping that it wouldn’t ruin the original story and that the sequel would live up to my expectations. Well, the book releases today, and here is my review.

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Book Review: Esme’s Wish by Elizabeth Foster

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There’s nothing quite like poolside reading. Sunlight dances across the water creating circles of light while palm trees create shadows that wave upon the pool’s floor. It’s relaxing and peaceful and…magical. There is just something about water, be it pool or ocean, that is magical. For me, it conjures stories of mermaids, magical lagoons, secret caves, and adventure. Luckily, I had just the book for my poolside reading this week. Continue reading